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Showing content with the highest reputation since 06/21/2018 in all areas

  1. 9 points
    Aromantic was added to the dictionary this month: https://www.ksdk.com/mobile/article/news/nation-now/spoiler-alert-binge-watch-impostor-syndrome-added-to-oxford-english-dictionary/465-66a80472-a15b-4586-a1c7-941659a6c249
  2. 7 points
    Hi guys 😊 I have scoured the internet for posts about being aroace and many of them have helped immensely, but not a lot of them addressed this particular element of the experience. So I figured I would take a stab at articulating it here in hopes that other aroaces (or honestly any a- or arospec people) can empathize and provide advice. I discovered ace and aro identities after my first attempts at dating. I was 22 years old and still had never dated or kissed anyone, so I felt like it was about time to address it. When I found a couple of people who seemed interested in me, I went forward with it because I thought they were genuinely cool, attractive people and I was flattered. But I felt incredibly uncomfortable with anything non-platonic and could not even bring myself to kiss or hold hands. I decided to look into asexuality and aromanticism because it felt like there was something more to my discomfort beyond just nerves and inexperience. And...bam. My world basically exploded. I realized my "crushes" were really just squishes. My "attraction" was purely deeply platonic and aesthetic. Basically, I thought I was on the same page as everyone else, but it turns out I am clearly not since the way I experience attraction is fundamentally different. I proceeded to have a breakdown because I felt alienated from my friends and family. I felt cut off from these emotions people actually feel. Sexual and romantic attraction is a real, powerful experience and not just something you see in books and media and find entertaining. Dating and sex are not just obligations or activities people do for fun in order to say they did it. They are experiences that derive from an attraction that stems from within, rather than from external pressures. My question(s): How do you move forward with this realization? How do you accept and embrace these parts of your identity without exaggerating how it makes you different? Inversely, how do you uphold the validity of your struggles as an aspec or arospec person when it seems like both straight people, as well as gay and bi people, do not understand? I know these are not simple questions, but honestly, ANY form of feedback, advice, and/or narrative would really help me regain a sense of balance.
  3. 6 points
    Wow. I just want to say a huge thank-you to each person who responded. Each reply managed to address a different angle of what I have been struggling with, and I noticed I have felt more at peace in the last view days than I have in a while. I think it had to do with reading this thread. Obviously there are going to be good days and bad days, but it empowers me to know I am not alone and that we have more in common with one another than we might think. ❤️😌
  4. 5 points
    I honestly flip-flop between "Yeah! I'm aro and proud!" and "Romance looks so sweet! Why can't I just experience it positively, like normal people? Maybe I can conversion therapy myself into it." and I've known for months. Here's how I say, "I don't need romantic/sexual attraction! I have x, y and z," without feeling like I'm overcompensating. Sometimes I decide I'm destined for greater things. I'm still in my teens. I'm gonna be a doctor, or a writer, or a researcher, and the time I would spend dating would take away from my passion, my success. I also keep in mind that I don't have to live some kind of great life in order to justify my aro existence. I'm nice to my friends and family, and if I spend the rest of my life working at a children's museum (as I have so far), being part of a kid's fun day, that's enough. When I focus on what I am passionate about, I forget about what I'm supposed to be. I like parasites, kids, medicine, Netflix, video games, playing guitar, Michelle Branch's music, languages, reading, writing, cats, etc... Honestly, sometimes you just have to study something that fascinates you to stop your brain from hamster-wheeling. But I'm a nerd like that. Also, some people really want to understand! I had that experience booth-sitting at my university during aro-spec awareness week. I was handing out pamphlets and aero chocolates (pun alert), and I actually had one of my classmates come up to me in the cafeteria later (after reading the pamphlet) and asking me what more I could tell her about this, because she found this so interesting. So, perhaps some people wish they were cool like us 😄.
  5. 5 points
    Hi, it seems that is a complicated situation. If she's giving you a hard time because of the fact you're aro even when you tried to explain maybe is time to rethink that friendship, but if is a topic that comes once in a while maybe you can just ignore her and enjoy all the other aspects of your friendship . I know that is very difficult to explain to certain people the way we are and the feeling of being invalidated really sucks, but as time passes by, she is will realize that is not a phase and if not, well, is upon her if she decides to live in denial . Don't know your age but I'm 37 years old and still some friends and family are trying to match me with different women hoping to find my better romantic half and think that I'm hurt or have commitment issues (nope), initially I was angry and sad but now I just laugh and enjoy how their efforts arrive to point 0 😂. My advice is : if she's almost bullying you because of that, well, friends don't do that so as hard this could be, sometimes is better cut certain relationships but if is only occasional maybe you can just shrug off and enjoy your friendship (I know is complicated but sometimes some people understand as time advances ). By the way, why is a big deal for her?. Sorry about my English and have a nice day!
  6. 4 points
    So I just found out that that my newest friend is aromantic, which is actually just a bonus to all the other stuff we have in common. Get in!
  7. 4 points
    So I've always just assumed that I was straight, but I was always open with talking about attractive women but always kind of left at that. I was never averse to the possibility, but because I'd never really had an experience or every felt like I "liked" women so I just assumed. I've recently had my first wlw experience which I enjoyed, it opened my perspective on what I like, but I am still feeling kind of weird. Like it's cool that I now know that I'm not straight (still hesitant to chose a label, so I am still questioning but identify as queer.) but have no desire to act on it, like I have no desire to actively pursue men that I find attractive unless it's a more convenient situation. I'm feeling weird because I want to feel "true" to this new discovered part of attraction, but because I'm super aro and I never felt that my sexual desires were the least important part of my life. Like I really hated ever talking about my sex life with people to the point that people assumed I was gay anyway. I still feel the same way, but I don't want it to feel like I'm hiding my life even though I know that I am just a secretive person. I dunno, I think Im conflicted with the culture of the LGBTQA community and wanting to be out and proud and having this be the forefront of my identity, but I don't feel this way. I really don't think it's important for people to know all of my business. Like who gives a fuck who I fuck, but also knowing that why should anyone need to know? Has any one else experienced this? asking for a friend (me)
  8. 4 points
    i attended my first pride parade today. i wore my t-shirt (heart with flag colours) and i was kind of nervous 'cause you know, some people don't think we belong, but while waiting for the train into toronto, someone wearing rainbow stuff smiled at me. once there, i met up with my friend and a bunch of her friends, two of whom are aro, and i got to talk to one about it a bit. (also, several of them are poly, like me, which for some reason i didn't mention.) one simply asked what flag i was wearing, and i told her. i didn't see anyone else in aro stuff or any flags, but when the group 'ace toronto' went by, i got a little card with info about asexuality and aromanticism. it was a good time. have you guys been?
  9. 4 points
    You can be, if you feel like it applies to you! I certainly feel bad about having a romantic relationship or being confessed to in general when I'm unable to experience romantic attraction. If you feel like you are aro-spec in some way but don't know how to articulate it, here are some posts that may help you understand possibilities or even sort out your own romantic orientation: You might be aromantic if... Experiences with romance repulsion: one, two, three Lithromantic / Akoiromantic Idem- Gray aromantic Dread- Aroamory Queerplatonic relationship What does a squish mean? Remember that you don't need to label yourself, to label yourself in the most specific way possible, or to stay with the same label for your whole life, if you don't feel like a label doesn't apply to you anymore. Labels are tools to be used, not prescriptions you need to abide by forever.
  10. 3 points
    BABY DON'T HURT ME, DON'T HURT ME, NO MORE- Oh, that wasn't the question? Eh, then I got nothing.
  11. 3 points
    Of course it is! Always! It does work with an US proxy, though. Anyway, this link works for me (EU) and has the same content.
  12. 3 points
    these descriptions resonate with me. i like talking to them, even listening to them, and just being around them, being excited to see them, assuming i know them irl. (i've had them on celebrities and internet friends.) i want to get to know them better. aesthetic attraction can be involved, but isn't necessarily. i find myself thinking about them more often than i do about friends or people i just find sexually attractive. i can have what i call 'aro crushes'--squish + sexual attraction--on guys, but i totally have purely platonic squishes, where gender isn't a factor. some people are saying they've had just a few in their life, whereas i have a few a year. i don't have one at the moment--my most recent was a little aro crush on a french guy i met in japan last month. before that, a squish on a girl with whom i interacted on youtube and tumblr.
  13. 3 points
    i'm very straight. by which i mean i've never been sexually attracted to a woman (or romantically, obv--in term of squishes/platonic attraction i'm like pan but i think pretty much everyone is). i'm not opposed to the prospect; it's just never happened. my heterosexuality is not a big deal, especially compared to my aromanticism--i'm not worked up about acting on it, which would be evident from observing my life. 😄 but i agree, while i'm fairly open about my aromanticism, i think sex is a weird think to discuss in casual conversation (it's fine if other people like to). anyway, orientation is defined by attraction, not action, so only you can define yours.
  14. 3 points
    hmm, maybe the definition of 'Nice Guy' has shifted over the last 7 years or so. The understanding I had in relation to the cartoon would be in the moment of weakness and loneliness the nice guy would make a move on the understanding that he loves you and has invested lots of care so you should give him love and sex as it will make you feel better, then when you say no you get called a bitch and the nice guy either ghosts out of your life or begins harassing you. Nice Guys used to only be revealed when you rejected them, so you had to look hard for warning signs. Really to me that cartoon seems to be unrequited love on his side and settling on her side of the relationship. I remember being in high school and there was a church minister advocating for women to settle to boost birth rates, don't waste your life looking for Mister Right when you can make a happy life with Mister Right-Now.
  15. 3 points
    Decided with all the impending loneliness I've been feeling that I ought to get used to my own company. So far I have done a pretty crappy job of making myself get out for something other than work or errands. But tonight I went out just for me--I went to an art exhibit reception that included a photograph and poem pairing by me, and then I went to a graphic novel discussion group at my public library and picked up a bunch of books I don't have time to read. It was mostly pleasant.
  16. 3 points
    I think I actually made peace with my orientations before I knew what they were. After I broke up with my final ex (who is now one of my dearest friends), I remember having to really look inward and contemplate why our relationship didn't work. Turns out that even when I care deeply for someone, there is nothing unique to a romantic relationship that I can't get out of a friendship (or as I'm now aware, a platonic partnership). I also thought about my habit of dating people simply to avoid 'friendzoning' them, as from what I've seen, a simple rejection is a far better alternative than having someone enter a relationship where they don't feel loved back in the way they're looking for. As far as not exaggerating it, I joke a lot about Schrodinger's Closet: I'm simultaneously in and out of the closet because while I don't outright state my orientation, I don't go out of my way to act like I'm anything other than aromantic/asexual. (Also, there's no real exaggerating an identity: it's part of you, and how you respond to learning more about yourself is also part of you.) Nobody ever really asked me about my orientation before I transitioned, and nowadays, people only seem to ask when they know I'm trans. I get a lot of "that will change" attitudes, but I just roll my eyes and let them think what they want to think. (Let's be real: I'm almost 25 and I've experienced 2 different puberties; if I were supposed to be anything other than aro/ace, I think something would have shifted by now.) My dearest friends get it and validate me, to the point that I actually can get tactile with a dear friend who's a cishet guy, and he's comfortable because he 100% recognizes me as aro/ace. I've found over the years that I've been meeting more and more aro, asexual, and people within either umbrella, not to mention people of all orientations that completely understand. Several have just been musicians who I had been colleagues with for quite some time before they mention their orientations, some were people I met in trans spaces. Heck, one or two were even childhood friends, go figure. More people have started coming out to me about orientation/gender now that I'm a bit more openly trans. I guess for advice on upholding the validity, I think it helps to find the support to give you more confidence in how you speak about your identities. I've spent a fair amount of time in aro and ace online communities where I've been able to articulate my thoughts, and I think that gives me more confidence to discuss my identity with those who aren't as familiar, because they'll either be receptive and *get* it, or if they're not, I can just roll my eyes, maybe gripe anonymously if I want, and still feel comfortable in my identity at the end of the day.
  17. 3 points
    Can you try getting her to think about how it would make her feel if someone said something like that to her? If she has a romantic partner, you could ask her to think about how it'd feel if someone told her, "I don't think your feelings for [partner] will last, you're not going to love them forever." Or if there's some part of her identity she's not 100% secure about, you could ask how she'd feel if someone told her, "You may think you're X for now, but I think that will change, you're not going to identify as X forever." The point here isn't to be cruel or to give her a taste of her own medicine!! Make it very clear that you're not saying you agree with these statements, and not saying you think her feelings will change. You're just asking her to recognise that when someone does say something like that they're essentially saying, "I know you better than you know yourself," or, "I don't believe that you have a reliable understanding of your own feelings/identity," and that's incredibly condescending. If she's a good friend in general, hopefully she'll be able to understand that. Sometimes people just don't realise the hurtful implications of things they're saying until you spell it out for them.
  18. 3 points
    I feel like the big problem for most of those people are not really the lack of sex but rather the loneliness and isolation they seem to feel. I don't know that the aro community could offer any relief in that. Most of them seem to want a romantic relationship. But maybe there could be some help for them to separate sex, romantic feelings and intimacy in their minds. The best way forward for many of them would probably be to put all their effort into cultivating stronger, more intimate friendships. That way they would have someone to talk to about these feelings, and help trying to figure out what they want from life and how they can aim there.
  19. 3 points
    Before I knew I was aro, my "crushes" would take up a lot of my mental capacity because I did not have the language to describe my end goal. I knew I was drawn to a particular person, but the thought of doing anything romantic or sexual (I'm aroace) with them just did not compute. So my crushes actually gave me a lot of anxiety because I had no idea what I was feeling. But something clicked when I discovered the word "squish." Some aros and aces do not prefer the term, but for me it really helps communicate an intense platonic attraction and admiration that is similar yet fundamentally different from a crush. Similarities (based on how I have heard people describe crushes): My squish becomes kind of a hobby. I fangirl over them. I admire them aesthetically. I am curious about their thoughts. I wish to be around them. I care about what they think of me. I feel a general sense of happiness that they exist in the world. I like to bask in their presence. Differences: Dating? Sex? No thanks. I would just like to be close friends. I am not jealous when they date other people - I just would like to make sure I can still spend time with them. Now that I think about it, my squishes resemble celebrity crushes without the romantic and sexual attraction lmaooo. Or they make me feel the same excitement I experience when I see a cute dog. I think that is also why I like the term "squish" bc I just want to squish them because they make me happy! It can also feel like admiring a painting that you find beautiful, and that resonates with you for some reason. As for describing squishes to non-aces and aros, I usually begin my describing the ways my squishes are similar to crushes. It helps when you start with an experience they understand. Then I get into what makes a squish different. Metaphors (like celebrity crushes, cute animals, and paintings lol) can also work well.
  20. 2 points
    I have no clue. But I see plenty of people act like fools because of it.
  21. 2 points
    I have. She asked me out and thanks to amatonormativity i thought maybe i wanted to be with her too, so i said yes. I knew i wasn't ~in love~ or anything, but i liked her a lot and i figured it would develop over time. At the time, i remember being pretty nervous and unsure about the whole thing, but i figured we were just going on one date to see if we were a good match. Imagine my surprise when she referred to me as her SO the next day! We clearly had different ideas of what we were agreeing to in the beginning, but i didn't want to ruin it by disagreeing so i was like "welp guess i have a gf now." I think part of it was a social status thing too -- i wanted to get an SO because my friends all paired off or at least had been in a relationship before, and i was afraid people would think i was a loser who couldn't get a date, instead of just not wanting one. I wanted a girlfriend so i could say i had one, and to prove to myself that i was appealing enough for someone to pick me as "the one" over everyone else they knew. That's not what i was thinking at all when i agreed to go out with her, but i sort of knew i had that mindset and in retrospect it definitely made me more inclined to believe i was falling for her even as it became more and more clear that i wasn't. We were together for about a year and a half, although i felt wrong about the whole thing for most of the relationship. I didn't want to lose her as a friend, so i stuck around a lot longer than i should have. It was incredibly stressful and i felt really guilty for not feeling the way i was "supposed" to feel. Very happy to be out of that relationship, even though she's a great girl. Feels like i can finally breathe right again!
  22. 2 points
    Oh worm? I mean, terrible, but worm. God.
  23. 2 points
    Me too 😄 Then I met someone who was like perfect on paper. And I thought, huh that's weird.
  24. 2 points
    I think a lot of people could benefit from knowing that aromanticism is a thing. There may be more aromantics who don't know it's a thing than anyone realizes. Also, with the type of assignment that Boston College and two colleges in South Korea have, I think it's about time more people find out we exist. I'm taking a public speaking class in the fall so I plan to start speaking about it then.
  25. 2 points
    Yeah I honestly couldn't even read through this whole article because it just made me feel bad, like being asexual is something I'm going to resent when I'm 40 or whatever and feel like a monster for. Most of these people really don't seem aro to me.